When the University of Michigan researchers gave extra morphine-like drug stimulation to a certain part of rats’ brains, it caused them to eat twice the normal amount of sweet fatty foods—in this case, M&M milk chocolate candies.
“The same brain area we tested here is active when obese people see foods and when drug addicts see drug scenes,” says Alexandra Difeliceantonio.
“So it seems likely that our enkephalin findings in rats mean that this neurotransmitter may drive some forms of overconsumption and addiction in people.”
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Photo credit: Alexandra Difeliceantonio